Chinchilla coats have to stay healthy and clean. In order to do that, your pet chinchilla must have dust baths on a regular basis. The dust baths also help to keep their coats silky, shiny and keeps the coats looking thick. Your pet enjoys these types of baths because they get to roll and flip in the dust. As long as they get to move around, they're fine, hence the reason for rolling and flipping in the dust.
The best type of bath dust to use should be bought from the store. That is because the product is tailor made for chinchillas. As they roll and flip in the dust, the dust infiltrates through the coat and goes in their skin. This causes the dust to soak up oil and dirt from their fur. The bath dust for your pet should reach several inches deep in a container.
Two types of dusts used most often are "Blue Cloud Chinchilla Dust" and "Blue Sparkle Chinchilla Dust". Make sure the bath dust you purchase is specifically tailored for your pet chinchilla. You risk not having the same effect on your pet if your purchase something other than bath dust. Chinchilla bath dust should work similar to what they would have in their homeland.
For a container, you can use a heavy bowl that won't tip over. Get one that is larger than your pet. Some good suggestions are glass fish bowls or canisters. Another suggestion is a plastic house type container. This type of container should have a round bottom. You should put the bath in the chinchilla's cage each evening as the chinchillas are moving around.
You can't bathe your pet chinchilla too much with the dust bath. This can cause their skin to dry out. The dust should not be left in the cage because the animal will sit in it and utilize it as a litter box. Give your pet a dust bath at least twice a week. It's better to administer it in the evening, when they're the most active.
However, if you determined that your pet's fur looks dull or moist, you can give them the bath more than twice a week. Of course, when it gets hot and humid, your pet should get more frequent baths. The baths should last about 10 - 15 minutes. If you find that your pet's skin is dried out, flaky or itchy, cut back on the frequency of the dust bath.
The bath dust can be reused several times before changing. After you've bathed your pet, check for any waste and scoop it out. You should also use fresh bath dust if you find the current dust to look dirty or clumpy. Throw it out and use a fresh batch of dust. You may find it useful to try a covered bath, but the downside is that your pet will still move around and shake off the dust. So a covered bath may actually defeat the purpose. You should get a good duster and continue to provide regular baths.